Through the Gates of Thought
The Law of Mortgages in Ghana
The Law of Mortgages in Ghana discusses the Law relating to the use of immovable property as security for the repayment of a loan or the performance of some other obligations. It explores the historical contours of mortgages tracing its evolution from ancient Roman times through its development in English Law and how it was received in Ghana as a legacy of colonization as well as statutory interventions in Ghana. It discusses the various ways in which a mortgage may be created under Ghanaian Law as well as the essential characteristics of a mortgage and the incidents captured in the maxim “once a mortgage, always a mortgage”.
In this regard, it also discusses the nuances and legal ramifications of mortgaging marital property or property belonging to a spouse, particularly married women, as well as the considerations of independent legal advice leading to the conclusion of a mortgage transaction.
This book also addresses the remedies available to a mortgage in the event of default. The remedies discussed include suing the mortgagor on his personal covenant to perform; sale of the mortgaged property (judicially and statutorily); exercise of the right of possession; and the appointment of a Receiver. These discussions are done in the context of the various relevant statutes such as the Mortgages Act, 1972 (NRCD 96), the Home Mortgage Finance Act, 2008(Act 770) and the Borrowers and Lenders Act, 2008 (Act778). It also discusses the vexed question of priority of mortgages which determines the sequence in which competing claims over a mortgaged property or sale proceeds of a mortgaged property are settled, particularly in the event that the proceeds of sale are not enough to pay all mortgages. Furthermore, it discusses technical concepts relating to priority of mortgages such as tacking, consolidation, marshaling, exoneration and contribution.
The book also treats the subject of transfer of mortgages by both the transferor and transferee; redemption of mortgages; and pledges. The last chapter of the book is the practitioner’s chapter which focuses on the intricacies of a mortgage action.
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Godwin Djokoto is the Managing Partner of Legal Anchor Ghana. He was called to the Ghana Bar in October 2003. He holds a Master of Laws (LL.M) degree from the Schulich School of Law, Dalhousie University in Halifax Nova Scotia, Canada. He graduated from the University of Ghana with a First Class Honours in the Bachelor of Laws (LL.B) degree programme in 2001. He is also a product of Accra Academy. Currently, Godwin lectures at the University of Ghana School of Law, Legon where he teaches Contract Law, Immovable Property Law, Banking Law, Equity, Succession and Law of the Seas (in Public International Law).
Godwin also has extensive experience in legal consultancy. As a consultant, with a wide scope of interest, he has carried out consultancies in the fields of banking, international fisheries management, land law, regulation of the construction industry and many others. Godwin has served as resource person for a number of organizations including the Commercial Court, the Ghana Shippers Authority, the International Union for the Conservation of Nature(IUCN) and the Ascertainment of Customary Law Project on varied subjects. He was also a Member of the International Panel of Experts appointed by the FAO (of the UN) and International Institute for Environment and Development (IIED) in the United Kingdom to review the Technical Guidelines for lawyers in the implementation of the Voluntary Guidelines on Governance of Tenure (VGGT) relating to land, forestry and fisheries. He is also a member of the Legal and Technical Team which represented Ghana in the Ghana-Cote D’Ivoire Maritime Boundary Arbitration before the International Tribunal on the Law of the Seas(ITLOS).
In 2005, he worked at the Legal Advisory Section of the Office of the Prosecutor at the International Criminal Court in The Hague as an intern. In this capacity, he was tasked with, among others, the responsibility of writing a commentary on the Rome Statute of the ICC particularly on the admissibility and presentation of evidence before the ICC and other international criminal tribunals under the Legal Tools Project.
Godwin has also in the past worked at the erstwhile Intercontinental Bank Limited as a Legal Officer where he rose through the ranks to head the Legal Department. In this capacity, he represented the Bank in Court and before other adjudicatory and arbitral bodies such as the Labour Commission. He advised management and staff on a wide array of subjects ranging from banking, labour, insurance, debt recovery and many other subjects. He also developed expertise in drafting and reviewing agreements; preparation and supervision of Credit Facility Agreements and registration of charges created as security for credit facilities, reviewing and advising on credit applications and performing company secretarial functions assigned.
Finally, Godwin is a member of the World Jurist Association and the Ghana Bar Association. He has over the years carved a niche as someone who is meticulous and pays attention to details and has acquired extensive experience in litigation and corporate legal and investment practice.
Godwin has written many articles and has attended several seminars and conferences.